A lot of the abatements & other supports to bring in business to townships & cities centers on one main process: job creation.
Yet nobody tracks any meaningful statistics to see if the economic argument holds up. Yes we can see in the short term that jobs are created. But for how long? And how many folks are moved in from outside the area that gave the incentives? And how much money is paid in wages to and collected in local taxes from those people who get a job with a company receiving some form of aid?
Is it really the case that in a nation with as many universities & colleges filled to the brim with undergrad & grad students who need projects to complete for their degrees, there is no professor of economics, political science, or even of philosophy who will assign to some young researchers the task of gathering up the data to check into exactly how much a locale gains by giving up so much to a corporation?
The cost of the awards is certainly far higher. A full accounting, The Times discovered, is not possible because the incentives are granted by thousands of government agencies and officials, and many do not know the value of all their awards. Nor do they know if the money was worth it because they rarely track how many jobs are created. Even where officials do track incentives, they acknowledge that it is impossible to know whether the jobs would have been created without the aid.